After listening to Orlando Pirates defender Happy Jele downplaying Bucs’ title chances at the PSL offices during a conference held in Parktown in Johannesburg yesterday, Kaizer Chiefs counterpart Ramahlwe Mphahlele was quick to admit that Amakhosi are challenging for the league honours this campaign.
Neither Chiefs nor Pirates have lifted any major silverware in the past two seasons. And now, ahead of their Soweto derby meeting at the FNB Stadium on Saturday, both teams have a chance of winning the league.
Amakhosi are third on the log with 35 points, while Bucs are second after collecting 36 points – five and four points respectively behind table leaders Mamelodi Sundowns who are on 40 points – having played 22 matches each.
“There is no need beating around the bush here, we want to win the league,” said Mphahlele.
“We will go all out on the day and make sure that we win the match.
“We are one point behind them and five points behind Sundowns. So, there is no way they (Pirates) are not challenging for the league.”
With Amakhosi heading into this game with two wins and one draw in their last three games, scoring four goals without conceding, Mphahlele believes their defence has been really firm and they are confident going into this game and his only worry being up front.
“We have been doing quite well when defending, but we need to improve when it comes to scoring goals.
“We are not scoring much and I believe it all comes with having composure when you’re inside the box. But it is something that we have been working on at training and it will come right.”
Jele, despite not entertaining the fact they are title contenders, says they will be looking for consistency when the teams meet over the weekend.
“Our focus is not at winning the league, we are just looking at being consistent because this is something that we were missing last season. The aim is to make sure that we improve from last season because we didn’t do that well,” said Jele.